In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Lazy Learners.”
I think I may have looked like this guy a couple of times while walking down the streets, metal banging deep into my ear drums – crazy enough that I would just not jump in the air to relieve the rush. It must have started in my toddler years when I started counting beats and moving my wrists and ankles to every beat.
I have no clue when this crazy habit turned into a long held and suppressed passion. Yes, I’m talking about drumming. Yearnings often have a strange way to fill voids around you. They just simply pop up when you are least prepared for them. You’d have no money, no resources, no motivation to start a new chapter. But this is how and when life throws you tests to check if you’re still that kid who’d give anything to hit a six on the first ball of every over, to take a wicket with the first ball that you bowl – to test your zeal.
It came and went by, multiple times – the opportunity to start drumming. I’d have no money or the studio would be far or I’ll simply be lazy enough to not let even an earthquake move me from my bed and each time it felt like I missed a train and with it, the journey to all good and adventurous things. And when I think about it now, all the while I was simply avoiding the journey to start finding myself and my truer purpose.
I have this crazy habit of killing myself and my ambitions before building new ones. It starts with a simple and an insignificant compromise made in the name of benevolence wherein I’ll give my chocolate away or skip a pizza to provide for a cab ride for my wife. You know it’s these kind of things that birth a lackadaisical attitude. I have a tendency to wait for opportune moments to arrive when I’ll best savor the pleasures that I indulge in. But sadly, it has never served me well, or that’s how feel right now – left behind, cowering from the harsh realities of this world.
I’m evolving as all things do. And with it I’m learning the important factor that governs all things – TIME. And as each moment passes me by, this incredible urge to finish all that’s yet incomplete is killing all the patience I’ve accumulated in my 30 years past. It feels that I must miss no train again. And if it means losing something precious, so be it, for all good things that you do for yourself compensate for other good things that aren’t really high on longevity.
So now when I play inside the jamming room and the calf muscles start to burn, I think about all the times I have ditched this pleasure – my pleasure in order to pleasure others. Now I don’t get scared when I hold those two sticks between my fingers. I’m just starting (3 classes young) but the encouragement I get from my teacher is enough to let me return to my home with a well earned smile. This, my friends, is true happiness. Nothing surpasses it!!!
From being an addict to a neat sober life, from being a couch potato to burning my muscles again, from losing my job to regaining one in one of the largest MNCs in India, having to plan for an overhauled life when there’s none left in my soul. I’m fighting each day and every hour of my existence, for revival of my body and soul. I’m living better, I’m eating better. Striving to host a chapter that powers me to dream of happiness, completeness, an error free foray into being who I want to be. I’m dying to see if I’ve learnt from my mistakes. It’s history repeating itself to test me, break me, shake me, wake me up from my slumber. For the past few months, change has been the only constant.
My attitude has changed. Never once did I think of running away even while perfectly knowing the agony each phase brings with it. For the first time I’m ready to give life a chance to come to me. For the first time I’m giving myself a chance to roll with whatever life dishes out, to fly with the wind, even snowball. Never once did I say “NOW WHAT?”.
In December, they told us to start looking elsewhere for a job for the project here had ended but they’d try to absorb us in. In January they hinted they won’t absorb us for the sake of well-being of both the company and my career. I thought it was a very valid and wise move. I have way too much experience to get absorbed in a team where people of nearly half my experience would work above me only because I didn’t have hands on their technology.
To me though, it gave a chance to get out into the world and to see if I’m any better than the man who joined this company nearly 5 years ago, to test my skills, to gauge my self-worth, yet again. For some adventurous reason, I rather relished this challenge and instantly knew I had to leave for my betterment. Both, the company and I, had realized that moving on was the better option for each of us.
This is the new, aged me. The earlier, the younger me would have tried busting their balls for having sacked me, for I had way to much ego. I’m learning to think past my ego and think of all the betterment that any opportunity brings. I’m letting people stay themselves around me. In short I’m trying and giving up my inner force that made me change people around me. I’m letting them come to me. I’m letting life engulf me in its arms. I’m not afraid of leap-of-faiths anymore. I’m running full seasons, gaining new leaves while shedding the useless and old ones.
Moving to a new city offers me an opportunity to start from scratch again. Not only will it give me a chance to meet new people, it’ll also give my wife a chance to settle down at a place that she knows and loves. We’d together forget the horrors we faced in Delhi. This time we are wiser, capable of paying our bills from day one and free of all debt. Oh yeah I forgot to tell you all, I’m finally free from all debts and it is so relieving. 😀
I’m so passed my past now. While I waited for my offer from my new employer, life also threw me a chance to get even with my past. A chance to understand that I was never wrong, for all I’d done was lose a battle of love. I now know what happened, had culminated to a better today and an even better tomorrow.
This waiting period also threw me a chance to get out of this country for a while and land in a place that has forever intrigued me – United States of America. I got to witness the miracle of a new-born baby. I’m so happy for you brother! I got to see a culture far advanced than ours. A thinking not swallowed by petty religion & caste. The ability to talk to and smile at strangers. I got to see the affluent middle class that’s provided for by the government in ways Indians are still dreaming about. We are so unwilling to learn. I got to see the real order, not the one borne by chaos. I got to see a willingness to accept laws and a hesitation to break them for it may harm another human being. I got to drink better hazelnut frappes. I inhaled fresh clean air in the middle of the town, oh how much I miss it back here!
Future is about smart choices, about creating better opportunities, and working hard to bring them to fruition. It’s about learning to adapt and curb your instincts to see past your preferred options and your preparation to dive into a better realm that provides foundations for better plans and people & resources to execute them . I can finally back myself to think positive and not worry about failures for I’ll never miss a chance to learn and grow and become the man who dictates the wellbeing of his loved ones. I grow!
Don’t we all want happy faces around us all the time? We are all selfish and in turn want to share the communicable cheerfulness to brighten our own days. Grumpy looking people often make for a bad viewing and… company. Happy people share jokes, make us laugh, spread positive energy with their infectious smiles, and even make some unhappy ones seriously jealous. But have you ever thought why some of us are permanently grumpy? Don’t you think that they too want to flex their cheek muscles at least once every day and smile for a change?
Yes, I am grumpy. I’m told by people that there are, at max, 4 expressions that they’ve seen me wearing. I haven’t practiced them in the mirror. I just look that way. It’s, in all practicality, impossible for me to stay happy and smile all the time, for from time to time, the realities of life keep dawning upon me. Earlier my problem was I wanted to keep everyone else happy. I failed! Then someone, a few years back, told me to start thinking about myself and now my problem is I want to keep myself happy. I’m not fairing any better here as well. My sofa needs cleaning. I need new mattresses. I need a new seating arrangement for my PC at home, new chair and table, more ergonomic. I need to get the engine on my bike repaired and blah blah! I know you don’t want to hear it but that’s precisely how grumpy people talk, BEAR IT!
So what exactly does grumpy mean?
– Bad-tempered and sulky.
– Crabbed; annoyed and irritable.
Synonym – Crotchety!
Just like the way happy and cheerful people have days when they are sad and depressed, we, the grumpy ones; have days when we are Happy and Cheerful for once. It’s difficult for us to leave our comfort zone. Deep down we love the way people hate us, despise us, want to hurt our face so bad, that we look even grumpier. But that’s where we WIN every day. For no one hits us. No one can do a shit about the way we look or behave. All that they can do is look away which is precisely what we want – no attention! It serves me better that I’m introvert as well.
There are several emotions, aren’t they? We sift through plethora of them every day – from happy to sad or angry or empathetic in matter of seconds. It’s these emotions that often drive our moods. These emotions change the way we perceive our world, see its colours, and hear its sound – basically change the way we feel it.
What I find most interesting though is how some emotions bring out the best in you while some doom you to obscurity. These emotions impact our will to achieve like no other person ever can. They impact our state of mind and the vibes coming from us in general. These emotions are quite distractingly very visible and are quite in-your-face.
My mother has one such emotion – anger. She cooks her best food when she is angry. Me and dad used to secretly wish for her to get upset and then cook (psst psst we still wish so). It used to start with an argument between them that I’ll never understand. They never made sense to me. They were so – worldly. Dealing with day-to-day issues that anyone of them could resolve in the blink of an eye. Anyways – food and anger! Yes, this is one complaint my mother always has when she is angry – she keeps saying she hates cooking. That how she hates every moment spent in the kitchen and yet, when she sees dad set the first foot across the threshold of its entrance to cook himself, she’ll jump in and prepare some of the tastiest drool-worthy delicacies, a human will ever taste – all in a fit of rage and knowledge that dad will ruin everything inside the kitchen. The chances of her screwing up the food then drastically reduce to zero. I think most women will relate to this feeling!
And that brings me to my question – what’s the emotion that brings out the best in you?
Mine is anger and I guess this is something my mother has unknowingly rubbed onto me. I think clearer when I’m angry. I say better when I’m angry. My focus dramatically increases even when I’m venting out my anger on something completely unrelated to the real problem. I invariably end up doing all the right things when my hands are shivering with angst. The only problem is – that’s also the only time I’m thinking just for myself and in those on-the-thread moments, I end up hurting a few people.
Okay, then what’s the emotion that brings out the worst from you?
Mine is happiness. Yes, that’s the reason I’m grumpy. Happiness brings out my concern for others which in today’s world, is quite unappreciated. People start to think that I’m interfering with their lives when in the first place they are the ones sitting in my home, sipping beers, and sharing the sorry state of their sorry ass world with me – the most unconcerned person on this planet. People for some reason don’t understand genuine sympathy or empathy now. They fail to acknowledge an unselfish concern for their well-being but who can blame them. We all get ditched so many times and in so many ways, we can’t even rely upon ourselves to trust others and find their true motives, rest aside the chances of us believing anyone else for our good.
I guess I’m searching for unadulterated love, for my love even for myself isn’t enough pure!
A sense unknown.
A smile resulting from a smile.
A story so cute, you can’t shut the teller up.
A moment so selfless.
A sensation so unadulterated.
A pet pal, overjoyed at your return.
A wife sleeping so sound.
A face so calm yet sure.
A heartfelt greeting.
A voice that whispers in your ears in the morning – “Wake up sweet heart!”.
A joke that tickles the child in you.
A note that fills your day with bloom.
A song that parallels the days feeling.
An inspirational moment.
A moment of pure genius.
A tear of peace from silence in the heart, in the mind, in the air.
That’s Happiness for me.
Whatever it is, it’s definitely a feeling I forgot a long time back, and I can only guess if that’s happiness I remember. That night of rejoice, of yelling till the throat hurt, of hugs, of tears, of satisfaction. These days, elation simply causes high blood pressure. I can’t breathe. It’s been so long that things went my way, simple enough granting of wish sounds like happiness.
Is elation, happiness? Is happiness a milder form of elation?
Here are the definitions from the web for the two words –
an exhilarating psychological state of pride and optimism; an absence of depression.
state of well-being characterized by emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy.
I think both point towards an absence of depression. Just that elation specifically involves a sense of “ME” where happiness is a general term for a plethora of emotions that may or may not involve a smile. What do you think?
End of my life? Legacy? You kidding me! Who the hell thinks about all this stuff? What were you doing exactly when the thought popped in your head, eh – The Daily Prompt maker?
It’s as if, what the hell, lets see, how funny can this sad topic get. Anyways since we’re on it, let me see how far can I take it.
Let me quote one Mr. Robbie Williams from his song “Feel” –
“I don’t wanna die, but I ain’t keen on living either”
Death for me is a far-fetched thought. I’ve seen people die and I get really sad when I think about those good souls. I don’t believe in heaven or hell. I have to literally see it to believe it. But what I would like to be for the small little world of mine is an inspiration. When people think about me, they should think of me as a really honest man. If I bring tears to some eyes after I’m gone, they should be birthed by pride and happiness. They must all believe that I had a purpose in my life and I chased it as hard as I could. I don’t mean to pass on my legacy but at least the near and dear ones should remember me.
All I care about are truth and honest purpose. Try and remember me as someone who always had good thoughts about you unless I really despised you in which case I will make sure to let you know about you before I go. Try and love me after I’m gone for I can never treasure love. I don’t understand it properly enough to reciprocate it in the best possible way. Try and remember me as a practical guy who loved logic but was always inspired by his feelings.
I know people will never understand my perspective but I don’t want you to. Just believe in me and my good intentions. I’m not evil.
Warning – This may turn into a rant pretty fast!
Can your aims themselves turn into stumbling blocks for your happiness? The day I took the decision to write “A Blog A Day”, was the last day I was free and not tired. Damn this schedule is ruining my head and amidst the work that I get done in the day, I have to watch out for any topic that might evoke my interest to think about it. But all that pops up in my damn mind are – ridiculous code review comments, are they even valid and how do I avoid them in the code I’ll write next. Topics!!!!???? Please will you just smoke yourselves out of some window and land on my table? How difficult can it be but trust me, it truly is plus the difficulty in getting me inspired by any idea? It just shows how less I learn in my current office.
Oh yes… I started with something then haywired out of it… Aims and them turning into stumbling blocks!
Has any such decision, to do something constructive chronically and eventually making it a habit, itself become a burden for any of you? I heard a story somewhere and this is how it goes –
“There was once a very famous philosopher who loved reading, loved books and cherished collecting them. He started nurturing a dream of building his own library, full of his favorite books, at a tender age of 7. He read and read and collected and collected when at age 27, he had finally built a library inside his room. He kept on building it for next 10 years when one day he had a huge hall in the center of the town full of his favorite books – his own public library.
But one day, a fire in the library burned all his collection to ashes. He stood outside the burning hall, very silent, pondering, when someone asked – “How do you feel when you’ve lost such a treasure?”.
He replied – “Relieved!”.
I guess the moral of the story is quite clear and so is the intent of narrating it. Now some may argue why should it become a burden if it’s something you love to do so much?
Well lets delve deeper and divide the discussion into three items –
A. Things that you love to do but can do away with when you get bored
B. Things that you would love to do because that’s what makes you happy
C. Obsessions, case in point OCDs
Now, we can safely leave C aside for they are mandatory.
But A and B have a grey area wherein someone might start with B but end up at A or vice versa. The story I just narrated was a 30 years long journey from B to A.
The situations in our life change so fast that the love for some of our things may perish but a habit always persists. No matter how much you control, habits tend to present themselves at the oddest of times. I’m not talking OCDs here but simple things you do mindlessly. For I have one – I always walk like a rook on a chess board – 2 and a half – 2 to the front and then the next step right beside it. I don’t love doing it, it just happens. That’s how my mind signals my legs to walk on tiles. These things don’t make us good or bad because they are inherent. We have them ‘coz we can’t change them.
What makes us good or bad are our aims and our will to pursue them till we achieve the desired results.
Did I meet my goal for today? I hope so.
Any more theories?
Energy is like a river. You can’t stop it. It will find its way no matter what you do to stop it. It is indestructible for it will only transform.
So stop wasting it on negative people. They are nothing. They will eat you from the inside and you’ll have nothing to spend on productive thoughts and actions. If you do not spend your energy on negative people and only even preserve it and not indulge in wrong deeds, it’ll find its way out towards construction, positivity and productivity. This river of energy should only be guided towards productive and generous channels.
People who won’t be constructive in my life will get the least of my energy and time. If you can’t be constructive towards me, do just 1 thing – spread some joy and laughter, simply lighten up the mood. And if you can’t even do that, just leave me alone!
Now we know how to best tackle stress – just try to smile 🙂